The American Physical Therapy Association announces the launch of #ChoosePT, a campaign to educate the public about opioid abuse and promote physical therapy as a healthy and safe alternative for pain management.

Recently released guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend physical therapy as a nonopioid alternative for pain management. While opioids are appropriate in certain cases, such as cancer treatment, palliative care, and end-of-life treatment, they have side effects such as depression, overdose, and addiction, as well as withdrawal symptoms when usage is stopped, according to a media release from APTA.

“Opioids come with numerous serious side effects and only mask the sensation of pain,” explains APTA member and #ChoosePT campaign spokesperson Joseph Brence, PT, DPT, in the release.

“Research shows that physical therapist treatment can reduce or eliminate the need for opioids by improving physical function, increasing range of motion, and decreasing pain,” he adds.

The campaign will focus particularly on the states which the CDC identifies as having the highest numbers of opiate overdose deaths (West Virginia, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Kentucky, Ohio, and Rhode Island), and the highest numbers of opioid prescriptions (Tennessee, Alabama, West Virginia, Oklahoma, Kentucky, and Mississippi). In addition, APTA is working with the White House in its efforts to address the use of opioids, per the release.

For more information, visit #ChoosePT, or follow the #ChoosePT hashtag on Twitter or @MoveForwardPT on Facebook.

[Source(s): American Physical Therapy Association, PR Newswire]